Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Here's To July!

Hello! June is usually one of my favorite months, as it's typically associated with pleasant summertime activities like gardening, going to the beach and bike riding. 

Alas, June hasn't been quite as pleasant this year as I'd like. Oh, nothing earth-shakingly terrible has happened, but it's been mostly cooler and cloudier than normal in my neck of the woods. A check of our thermometer a few minutes ago showed that it's about 64 degrees - almost 20 degrees cooler than it should be!

Not so nice for going to the beach, and the below-normal temps and lack of sun have meant slow growing conditions for warm weather crops like tomatoes and peppers. 

And I sprained my ankle three weeks ago, which meant no bike riding - and not much of anything else in the way of physical activity the first several days of my recovery either. Again, there are physical injuries and ailments far worse than a sprained ankle, but it was still no fun being sidelined. 

But here's to July, which starts tomorrow. It's supposed to feel a bit more summer-like here by the end of the week, and of course there's the 4th of July on Saturday. It's an extra-special day for my family, as my dad will be celebrating his 93rd birthday then. 

The festivities continue the next week with our daughter's 20th birthday. Gee, how did she get to be that old?! 

To help celebrate the month of July even more, may I suggest the Hallmark website, which can be found HERE.

Yes, good ol' Hallmark, the greeting card (and more) company. As a greeting card maker, I have no need for theirs, but the lifestyle component of their website has lots of fun ideas. When you're on their main page, click on the "Ideas" tab. Once you do that, you'll be directed to the "Ideas and Inspirations" page that currently highlights 4th of July recipes, crafts and free printables - and something called the "30-day chill out challenge". 

Hey, chilling out for 30 days sounds fine to me, so I checked it out.  Day 2 is a winner: "Treat yourself to some ice cream!" I can go for that. Not much of a challenge there!

However, Day 13 will indeed be more of a challenge: "Try to go the whole day without hearing or reading any news - not even the headlines." Now, I'm not a news junkie by any means, but we do subscribe to the local paper, and I follow certain websites for statewide and national news as well. But I can try to do without any of them for one day.

For more summer fun, scroll down the "Ideas and Inspirations" page, click on "seasons" and then click on "summer". There, you'll see headings for party foods, crafts and more. 

I'd seen a display of adult coloring books (a recent craze) at a Barnes and Noble a few days ago and had been tempted to buy one, but I passed. But the folks at Hallmark.com have obliged by supplying downloads for six adult coloring pages - and yes, I printed them out. (They have six pages of kids' coloring pages there as well.)

So, there's lots of ideas on the Hallmark website for making July an even better month! Now, if the weather will only cooperate...

Note: now that I think of it, July has 31 days, and the chill out challenge has only 30 days. Maybe this activity had originally been posted for June? If I'd followed it, maybe June would have been a better month for me. Oh well, better late than never for a chill out challenge!

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